Published: Nov 15, 2022
round-the-clock safety assurance for runway operation
To reduce the foreign object threat on Changi Airport’s new Runway 3, NCS supported Changi Airport Group to enhance its 24-by-7, all weather foreign object detection system using state-of-the-art cameras and intelligent software algorithms to accurately detect, locate and record threat objects, sending alerts to air traffic control and ground safety teams in real-time.
Foreign objects deposited on airport runways can happen anytime and is a perennial threat to aircraft operation. Industry statistics have shown that foreign object related damages amount to some USD13B1 in losses a year and are the cause of 12%2 of the total aircraft incidents, some of which involve fatalities. Scheduled manual inspections of the runway surface are not effective as increasing aircraft movements limit the number of such physical checks, not to mention the difficulties posed by varying visibility conditions and potential human lapses.
NCS supported CAG to develop iFERRETTM 2.0, a robust runway foreign object detection system making use of advanced electro-optic equipment with low-light sensors, powerful optical zoom and sturdy pan-tilt device layered on with intelligent image processing software algorithms to offer automated, fast and accurate foreign object detection, location, recording and analytics functions. A major achievement was cutting down false alarms by more than ten-folds so that minimal operator attention is needed despite the vagaries of runway surface condition.
Snapshot of capabilities
• Intelligent image processing software integrated with state-of-the-art electro-optic sensors
• Automated features enabling fast and accurate detection, location, measurement, classification, alerting and recording functions, with significantly reduced false alarms
• Provides all-weather protection coverage, even in low-light, rain and haze weather conditions
The potential benefit of this product extends well beyond Runway 3 at Changi Airport. NCS is helping CAG to mirror this system to Changi Airport’s Runway 2 under reconstruction and is also working on collaboration with CAG to take this product overseas. iFERRETTM has been previously validated by independent experts to be compliant with specifications for such systems contained in Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) AC 150/5220-24 and AC 150/5210-24 and also with the latest advisory materials from the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).
1 Source: EU Aviation Safety Agency
2 Source: ICAO